‘Maring’ reached storm signal 2, never 5


Storm signal No. 2 was raised over northern Luzon on Monday as “Maring” (international name: Kompasu) lashed at nine provinces, but it never reached the highest storm warning signal, No. 5, as a recently created Facebook page falsely reported. Nor did the storm ever pack winds of up to 300kph as the page wrongly claimed.


The alarmist clickbait-y post of the Facebook page Qaqu on Oct. 11 read:

SIGNAL NO. 5 : BAGYONG MARING, 300KM/PH ANG LAKAS! DOBLE SA YOLANDA (Storm Maring, 300km/ph strength, double Yolanda)! See more: https://tinyurl.com/593bz493

The page also embedded to the post a 4-minute-17-second video that includes satellite images of Maring from the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration.


At the time the post was published at 5:45 p.m., Pag-asa’s Tropical Cyclone Bulletin No. 20 issued at 5 p.m. showed signal No. 2, the highest warning issued for Maring, raised over Babuyan islands, Ilocos Norte, Ilocos Sur, Apayao, Kalinga, Cagayan, Abra, Mountain Province and parts of Isabela.


The next bulletin issued at 8 p.m. maintained the signal over the nine areas. It said Maring had maximum winds of 95 kph near the center and gustiness of up to 115kph. It had passed very close to Camiguin, island in Cagayan.

Qaqu partly lifted the video from Pagasa weather specialist Ariel Rojas’ press briefing late Sunday morning. The nine provinces and several others were then under storm signal No. 1.


The URL provided in the post, meanwhile, led to the top deals of an online shopping site.


Apparently to make light of the post, Qaqu added a “Haha!” image that links to its Facebook landing page.


The Facebook page was created on Sept. 15 and described itself as “musician.” Its Oct. 11 post drew 225 interactions, 30 comments, and 2,800 shares.


Supertyphoon Yolanda (international name: Haiyan) recorded winds of up to 313 kph when it battered the country in November 2013. It was the one of most powerful storms recorded in history.


References


Dost_pagasa. (2021, October 10). Press Briefing: Tropical Storm "#MaringPH" Sunday, 11:00 AM October 10, 2021. DOST-PAGASA Weather Specialist: Ariel Rojas [Embedded video]. Facebook. https://www.facebook.com/PAGASA.DOST.GOV.PH/videos/6290715887669586


PAGASA-DOST. [@dost_pagasa]. (2021, October 11). TROPICAL CYCLONE BULLETIN NO. 20. Severe Tropical Storm “MaringPH” (KOMPASU). Issued at 5:00 PM, 11 October 2021. Next bulletin at 11:00 PM today [Tweet]. Twitter. https://twitter.com/dost_pagasa/status/1447489195295981570


Pagasa. (2021, October 11). Tropical cyclone bulletin No. 21. https://www.pagasa.dost.gov.ph/tropical-cyclone-bulletin-iframe


Qaqu. (2020, October 11). SIGNAL NO. 5 : BAGYONG MARING, 300KM/PH ANG LAKAS! DOBLE SA YOLANDA! See more: https://tinyurl.com/593bz493 [Embedded video]. Facebook. https://www.facebook.com/100072849729642/posts/117605754011082